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Physical Contest Games Potato Race I

( Physical Contest, Relay Race, Running, Team Wars and Battle )

The simpler and usual Potato Race is played in two forms (I) the players competing as individuals and (II) competing as teams. The following description is for individual competition the team game is described as Potato Race II. There are other forms of playing the individual game the one given here is according to the rules of the Amateur Athletic Union.

The competitors should each wear a large number pinned across the shoulders on the back where it may be read plainly by the judges. The competition is carried on in heats as many players as the playing space will allow playing in each heat. Potatoes should be used or blocks of wood are officially permissible. These wooden blocks may be secured of potato shape and are better than those of cubical form as the latter are apt to land on the corners and bound.

A starting line is drawn across the ground. At right angles to it a row of potatoes is placed for each player in the heat. The potatoes should be two yards apart and eight in number. The first potato should be two yards from the receptacle which is usually placed on the starting line one beside each competitor. This receptacle should be a pail basket box or can. The official dimensions of the A. A. U. call for its being not over two feet in height with an opening not over thirty-six inches in circumference. In handicap events the starting mark is paid from the rear of the can. The potatoes are replaced on the marks before the beginning of each heat the game in this form consisting solely of gathering them up not in placing them. There is no rule against tossing a potato into the receptacle but it is poor policy to do so as it increases the risks of failure.

The contestants start as for a race in response to the starters signals “On your marks ” “Get set ” “Go ” The game consists in picking up the potatoes one at a time and placing them in the receptacle. The potatoes may be picked up in any order desired. A potato dropped however must be picked up before another potato be touched or the player is disqualified. Similarly a potato missing the receptacle or bounding out of it must be placed in it before the next potato be touched or the player is disqualified. When all the potatoes have been placed in the receptacle the player finishes by dashing across a finish line a tape or strand of worsted stretched five feet back of the receptacle. As in all races in athletic form a player is disqualified for interfering with any other competitor or for touching the finish tape with the hands or arms the tape should be breasted. The winners in each heat play a final race or with large numbers competing semi-finals before the finals. Where small numbers are competing those finishing first second and even third may be entered for the final trials. In case of a tie both competitors are entered for the next (final or semi-final) heat or if tied in the final heat the tied competitors play again.

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